Big Eck coy on Hibs duo

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Rangers chief Alex McLeish has played down reports of a January raid on Hibernian for Scott Brown and Kevin Thompson.

McLeish is planning to bolster his squad in January in order to revive their title challenge and has already freed up a couple of places by releasing Francis Jeffers and Federico Nieto.

The Ibrox chief is a known admirer of the Hibernian pair and reports have suggested he is ready to raid Easter Road in January.

Although admitting he is a fan of the youngsters, McLeish claims no decision on who he will move for in January has been made.

"I like Scott Brown and I like loads of other players in The SPL," said McLeish.

"I think the financial difficulties have allowed teams to give youth a chance and there are a lot of young players in Scotland who excite me just now, not just at Hibs.

"But we haven't made an enquiry - no."

McLeish, meanwhile, claims he has no regrets over bringing Nieto and Jeffers to the club.

The duo did not come up to scratch and have been allowed to leave, but McLeish feels the fact Rangers have reached the last 16 in the UEFA Champions League has vindicated his summer transfer dealings.

"He (Jeffers) and Nieto have both suffered injuries and is pretty significant in why it didn't work out for them," said McLeish. "How can I regret bringing them in. We got to the last 16 of the Champions League.

"If I had done something else maybe we'd be doing better in the league and out of Europe and I would still be the dud in Europe as I've been called a few times in the last few years."